Editor’s note: This commentary is by Annette Smith, who is the executive director of Vermonters for a Clean Environment Inc. http://www.vce.org/ She is a member of the Rutland Regional Planning Commission, where she currently chairs the ad hoc energy committee. She has lived off grid in Danby for 30 years, and was named he 2016 Burlington Free Press Vermonter of the Year.
Most Vermonters accept the reality of climate change and support shifting our energy needs towards renewables. But in my conversations with Vermonters I have found that almost no one fully understands the mechanisms that have been put in place to achieve the state’s renewable energy goals. In fact, our energy policies are so complicated and convoluted that even Vermont legislators – many of whom consistently vote in favor of bills purporting to bring the state closer to a goal of 90 percent renewables by 2050 – don’t really understand them.
To help citizens and policymakers make more informed decisions, Vermonters for a Clean Environment has just released a report, Understanding Vermont’s Energy Policies. The report gives an overview of Vermont’s renewable energy policies, and provides context about our place in the regional electric grid. Continue reading